Worldwide Soccer 98
Sega's World Wide Soccer franchise has always been one of the best and most underrated series in console sports gaming. In fact, this was the best soccer series for a couple of years until Konami's WWS 64 arrived only a few months ago.
Like most companies that have a successful sports franchise, Sega is more or less adding a few, new features and improvements to the last game in the series (WWS '97). The already impressive 3-D polygonal player graphics are being improved by adding more detail, smoother animations and a few, new motion-captured moves. The repertoire at your player's disposal Includes namebrand moves such as headers, back-heel passes and banana kicks. Color co-commentary will also be provided by the broadcast team of Gary Bloom and Jackie Charlton.
Even with only a few new improvements and features, it is very likely that WWS '98 will still be one of the top next-generation soccer games. The only big question that remains is why it took so long for Sega to bring this game over from japan.
MANUFACTURER - Sega
THEME - Sports
NUMBER OF PLAYERS - 1-4
Cobi Jones said, "This is the best soccer game? on the planet." Cobi Jones' licensing bonus check must've made him blind. Worldwide '98 is one of the biggest disappointments of the year for me. I was a huge fan of last year's version. The problem is, soccer games in general have improved, and Worldwide didn't. First off, the multiplayer aspect is seriously lacking (for example, only certain modes can be played with friends). When you start the match, you're treated to an impressive view of the stadium and a loud crowd waving their home countries' flags in support of their respective teams. But once the game begins, the disappointment kicks in. Human-controlled players are identified by little, hard-to-see numbers, not by large, colorful circles. The real trouble, however, starts when play stops. With every corner kick, free kick, goal kick and throw-in, everything stops. You cannot move around the players on the field to set anything up. You simply must deal with the setup the CPU gives you. Another major annoyance is the completely off sync play-by-play. The announcers get plays and teams wrong almost all the time. Sometimes, they'll even scream out, "GOAL!" for no real reason. This is a very average soccer game by today's standards. It has a few nice features (realistic passing, on the fly coaching), but it has too many faults.
WWS '98 is definitely an above-average soccer game, but it's hardly perfect. The addition of Club teams is nice, and the engine seems to have been polished up a little bit, but otherwise this is pretty much the same game as last year with some annoying faults. The fact that you can't move around whenever the opposing team is about to put the ball in play really annoys me, and the Al isn't as good as it should be. Overall I'm disappointed.
This year's WW Soccer took a step forward graphically, while its gameplay took a step backward. The game looks better, but isn't as exciting as it used to be, especially because of the horrendous goalie intelligence. Balls kicked from across the field would find their way into the net in addition to easy routine plays, making the gameplay frustrating. The One-player Modes are still fun, but don't save this game from being disappointing.
What happened here? The first two versions of Worldwide Soccer were totally rockin' and now...this! This game has the worst graphics and the slowest gameplay of the series. The computer Al seems to be a carryover of last year's version (at best) and the game is a bit on the sluggish side. Played as a multiplayer game. WWS '98 has its merits (as do nearly all multiplayer games, I should add) but it's not enough to save this sinking ship.
If you like Worldwide Soccer 98, try other games: Worldwide Soccer 97.
2016-10-06 Worldwide Soccer 98 game added.